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Meet the Team: Onward is launching in Phoenix, Arizona!

With the help of our newest partner HonorHealth, we’re thrilled to announce that our signature service called a “Companion Ride”, an assisted door-through-door rideshare service, will be available in the greater Phoenix Metro area. Over the past few months, the team has been hard at work preparing to support our partners and riders in Arizona – and A LOT has happened. 

The team huddled for an informal hype session to share some of the things we’re most excited about as we launch in the region.

Ok Kim P. (Co-Founder and CEO), can you share a bit about Onward’s partnership with HonorHealth? What’s the goal?

Sure - Our work focuses around three main points:

Deploy our transportation management software to help team members coordinate all levels of transport from Ambulance, to Wheelchair/Gurney, Companion Rides, and traditional rideshare.

Enable the lowest cost, most appropriate level of transportation for patients based on their assistance and support needs.  Sometimes that might be an Onward Door-through-door companion ride instead of a wheelchair van, sometimes that is a stretcher van instead of using limited ambulance resources.

Improve patient flow within the health system, saving their team members time by building a responsive network of transportation providers enabled with a streamlined request workflow in our platform.

Matt T. (Senior Director of Engineering), you’ve been working to configure an integration with HonorHealth’s Epic EHR (Electronic Health Record), what does it do and what value does that bring to their team? 


The Epic integration connects HonorHealth’s EHR with Onward, enabling the two systems to talk to each other. This will enhance the experience of Honor Health team members by: 

  1. Enabling HonorHealth team members direct access to Onward, from within their Epic EHR instance, ensuring a secure SSO login process..

  2. Making ordering transportation fast and easy by automatically pulling in patient details required to book each ride type, also reducing data input errors.

  3. Provide a better experience for patients by pre-populating data to match riders to the ideal driver or ride type, specifically mobility support needs, preferred spoken languages, or gender preferences. 

Eric L. (Director of Marketing), could you share how Companion Rides benefit the Greater Phoenix area?

You bet - Launching with HonorHealth has a positive net effect for everyone in the Greater Phoenix Metro. 

For individuals, caregivers, and healthcare facilities in the region, our self-service Companion Ride ordering function is available. We’re hiring and training local Companion Drivers which means there are more resources available for assisted transportation.

Shivani P. (Chief Operations Officer) driver reliability is big - how are we creating a reliable driver network to cover the Greater Phoenix Metro?

Reliability is everything! Getting our riders where they need to go, on time, with the extra support of a Companion is Onward’s promise. Without a reliable network, we’d fall short. 

Developing our local Companion Driver team, we’re focusing on hiring the right people. We’re screening for key personality traits like empathy and caregiving backgrounds because we know individuals with a high EQ cultivate a supportive environment that ultimately translates to a reliable rider experience. 

AJ (Director of Operations), we know a lot of folks in Arizona are excited about a new Door-Through-Door transportation service in the area, can you tell us where Companion Rides will be available?

Yep - We’ll launch in counties where HonorHealth is present, so Maricopa County to start, but as we grow in the region, we plan to expand the scope to serve a wider audience.  We will also support trips to or from Maricopa, including longer distance trips. 

Ok AJ, we’re doubling up here, when a patient is discharged home from HonorHealth could they continue to schedule Companion Rides on their own? 

Definitely! Companion Rides are primarily scheduled by careteams at healthcare facilities, but if a patient needs the additional support of a Companion Ride, they can schedule a ride directly by downloading our app, scheduling a trip online, or by calling my favorite Concierge dispatch team.

Allison D. (Business Development Manager) we know Companion Rides are available in the Greater Phoenix Metro, but will Onward partner with other healthcare organizations in Arizona?

Absolutely! We’re currently working with the Skilled Nursing Facilities in HonorHealth’s network and having lots of great discussions with healthcare and transit organizations. 

Skilled Nursing, Independent Living, Assisted Living, Home Health, Dialysis Centers and independent clinics can learn more about Onward removes transportation barriers to care here.

If you work with an Arizona Hospital, VA, Transit Agency, or Health Plan and transportation presents a barrier to care, we’d love to help!  


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